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Enter a Messenger,
But what art thou, whose heavy Looks foretel
Some dreadful Story hanging on thy Tongue?
Mef. Ah, one that was a woful looker on,
When as the Noble Duke of York was slain,
Your Princely Father, and my loving Lord.
Edw. Oh, speak no more! for I have heard too much.
Rich. Say how he dy'd, for I will hear it all.
Mef. Environed he was with
And stood against them, as the hope of Troy
Against the Greeks, that would have entred Troy.
But Hercules himself must yield to odds;
And many Stroaks, though with a little Ax,
Hews down and fells the hardest-timber'd Oak.
By many Hands your Father was subdu'd,
But only slaughter'd by the ireful Arm
Of unrelenting Clifford, and the Queen:
Who crown'd the gracious Duke in high despight,
Laughid in his Face; and when with grief he wept,
The ruthless Queen gave him, to dry his Cheek,
A Napkin, steeped in the harmless Blood
Of sweet young Rutland, by rough Clifford Nain:
And after many Scorns, many foul Taunts,
They took his Head, and on the Gates of York
They set the same, and there it doth remain,
The saddest spectacle that e'er I view'd.
Edw. Sweet Duke of York, our prop to lean upon,
Now thou art gone, we have no Staff, no Stay.
Oh Clifford, boilt'rous Clifford, thou hast Nain
The Flower of Europe for his Chivalry,
And treacherously bast thou vanquish'd him,
For Hand to Hand he would have vanquish'd thee.
Now my Soul's Palace is become a Prison :
Ah, would the break from hence, that this my Body
Might in the Ground be closed up in rest;
For never henceforth shall I joy again,
Never, oh never shall I see more joy.
Rich. I cannot weep, for all my Body's moisture
Scarce serves to quench my Furnace-burning Heart:
Nor can my Tongue unload my Heart's great burthen,
For self-fame Wind that I mould speak withal,
Is kindling Coals that fire up all my Breaft,
And burn me up with Flames, that Tears would quench.
To weep, is to make less the depth of Grief:
Tears then for Babes; Blows and Revenge for me.
Richard, I bear thy Name, I'll venge thy Death,
Or die renowned by attempting it.
Edw. His Name that valiant Duke hath left with thee :
His Dukedom, and his Chair with me is left.
Rich. Nay, if thou be that Princely Eagle's Bird,
Shew thy descent, by gazing 'gainst the Sun:
For Chair and Dukedom, Throne and Kingdom say,
Either that is thine, or else thou wert not his.
March. Enter Warwick, Marquefs of Montague, and
War. How now, fair Lords? what fare? what News abroad?
Rich. Great Lord of Warwick, if we should recount
Our baleful News, and at each Word's deliverance
Stab Poinards in our Flesh, 'till all were told,
The Words would add more anguish than the Wounds.
O, valiant Lord, the Duke of Tork is Nain.
Edw. O, Warwick! Warwick! that Plantagenet,
Which held thee dearly as his Soul's Redemption,
Is by the stern Lord Clifford done to Death.
War. Ten days ago I drown'd these News in tears,
And now to add more measure to your Woes,
I come to tell you things fith then befaln.
After the bloody Fray at Wakefield fought,
Where your brave Father fought his latest Galp,
Tidings, as swiftly as the Poft could run,
Were brought me of your Loss, and his depart.
I then in London, Keeper of the King,
Muster'd my Soldiers, gather'd flocks of Friends,
March'd towards St. Albans to intercept the Queen,
Bearing the King in my behalf along:
For by my Scouts I was advertised
That she was coming, with a full intent
To dash our late Decree in Parliament,
Touching King Henry's Oath, and your Succession:
Short Tale to make, we at St. Albans met,
Our Battels join'd, and both sides fiercely fought;
But whether 'twas the coldness of the King,
Who look'd full gently on his Warlike Queen,
That robb’d my Soldiers of their heated Spleen;
Or whether 'twas report of her Success,
Or more than common fear of Clifford's Rigour,
Who thunders to his Captives Blood and Death,
I cannot judge; but to conclude with Truth,
Their Weapons like to Lightning, came and went:
Our Soldiers like the Night Owl's lazy flight,
Or like a lazy Thresher with a Flail,
Fell gently down, as if they struck their friends.
I cheer'd them up with Justice of our Cause,
With promise of high Pay, and great Reward:
But all in vain, they had no heart to fight,
And we, in them, no hope to win the Day,
So that we fled; the King unto the Queen,
Lord George your Brother, Norfolk, and my self,
In haste, port-haste, are come to join with you:
For in the Marches here we heard you were,
Making another Head, to fight again.
Edw. Where is the Duke of Norfolk, gentle Warwick ?
And when came George from Burgundy to England?
War. Some fix miles off the Duke is with the Soldiers;
And for your Brother, he was lately sent
From your kind Aunt, Dutchess of Burgundy,
With aid of Soldiers to this needful War.
Rich. 'Twas odds belike when valiant Warwick fled;
Oft have I heard his Praises in pursuit,
But ne'er, 'till now, his fcandal of Retire.
War. Nor now my scandal, Richard, dost thou hear :
For thou shalt know this strong right Hand of mine
Can pluck the Diadem from faint Henry's Head,
And wring the awful Scepter from his Fift,
Were he as famous, and as bold in War,
And he is fam'd for Mildness, Peace and Prayer.
Rich. I knew it well, Lord Warwick, blame me not,
'Tis love I bear thy Glories makes me speak.
But in this troublous time what's to be done?
Shall we go throw away our Coats of Steel,
And wrap our Bodies in black mourning Gowns,
Numb'ring our Ave Maries with our Beads.
Or shall we on the Helmets of our Foes,
Tell our Devotion with revengeful Arms?
If for the last, say Ay, and to it Lords.
War. Why therefore !Varwick came to seek you out,
And therefore comes my brother Montague:
Attend me Lords, the proud insulting Queen,
With Clifford, and the haught. Northumberland,
And of their Feather many more proud Birds,
Have wrought the ealic-melting King, like Wax;
He swore consent to your Succession,
His Oach enrolled in the Parliament,
And now to London all the Crew are gone,
To frustrate both his Oath, and what beside
May make against the House of Lancaster.
Their Power, I think, is thirty thousand strong:
Now if the help of Norfol', and my felf,
With all the Friends that thou brave Earl of March,
Amongst the loving Welchmen, canst procure,
Will but amount to five and twenty thousand,
Why Via! to London will we march,
And once again bestride our foaming Steeds,
And once again cry, Charge upon our Foes,
But never once again turn back and fly.
Rich. Ay, now mecbinks I hear great Warwick speak;
Ne'er may he live to see a Sun-shine Day,
That crys Retire, if Warwick bid him stay.
Edw. Lord Warwick, on thy Shoulder will I lean,
And when thou fail'ít (as God forbid the hour)
Must Edward fall, which peril Heaven forfend.
War. No longer Earl of March, bur Duke of York:
The next degree is England's Royal Throne;
For King of England thalt thou be proclaim'd
In every Borough as we pass along,
And he that throws not up his Cap for Joy,
Shall for the fault make forfeit of his Head.
King Edward, valiant Richard, Montague,
Stay we no longer, dreaming of Renown,
But found the Trumpets, and about our Task.
Rich. Then Cliffard, were thy Heart as hard as Steel,
As thou hast shewn it flinty by thy Deeds,
I come to pierce it, or to give thee mine.
Edw. Then strike up Drums, God and St. George for us.
Enter a Messenger.
War. How now? What News
Mes. The Duke of Norfolk sends you word by me,
The Queen is coming with a puissant Hoft,
And craves your Company for speedy Counsel.
War. Why then it forts, brave Warriors let's away.
[Exeunt omnes. Enter King Henry, the Queen, Clifford, Northumberland,
and the Prince of Wales, with Drums and Trumpets.
Queen. Welcome, my Lord, to this brave Town of York,
Yonder's the Head of that Arch-enemy,
That sought to be encompast with your Crown.
Doth not the Obje& cheer your Heart, my Lord?
K.Henry. Ay, as the Rocks cheer them that fear their Wrack;
To see this sight it irks my very Soul:
With-hold Revenge, dear God, 'tis not my fault,
Nor wittingly have I infring’d my Vow.
Clif. My gracious Liege, this too much Lenity
And harmless Pity must be laid aside:
To whom do Lions cast their gentle Looks?
Not to the Beast that would usurp their Den.
Whose Hand is that the Forest Bear doth lick?
Not his that spoils her young before her Face.
Who scapes the lurking Serpent's mortal sting?
Not he that sets his Foot upon her Back.
The smallest Worm will turn, being trodden on,
And Doves will peck in safeguard of their Brood.
Ambitious York did level at thy Crown,
Thou smiling, while he knit his angry Brows.
He but a Duke, would have his Son a King,
And raise his Issue like a loving Sire;
Thou being a King, blest with a goodly Son,
Didst yield consent to difinherit him;
Which argued thee a most unloving Father.
Unreasonable Creatures feed their Young,
And though Man's Face be fearful to their Eyes,
Yet in protection of their tender ones,
Who hath not seen them even with those Wings,
Which sometimes they have us’d with fearful Right,
Make War with him that climb'd unto their Neft,
Offering their own Lives in their Young's Defence